Akira Muto was the head of the Military Affairs Bureau under Fumimaro Konoe before WW2. He served in the Kwangtung Army in Manchuria during the early phases of the Second Sino-Japanese War, and was transferred to play leadership roles with the Central China Area Army, the Central China Expeditionary Army, and the Northern China Area Army between 1937 and 1939. In the opening chapters of the Pacific War, he was an officer in the Philippines Expeditionary Force. In 1942, he returned to Japan and again became the head of the Military Affairs Bureau, serving as one of Hideki Tojo's military advisors. In Jun 1943, he became the commander of the Japanese 2nd Imperial Guards Division in Singapore and Sumatra. In Oct 1944, he was transferred to the 14th Area Army in the Philippines as the chief of staff to Tomoyuki Yamashita. After the war, he was arrested and charged with atrocities committed against civilians and prisoners of war in China between Nov 1937 and July 1938 and in the Philippines between Oct 1943 and the end of the war. He was found guilty and was executed by hanging in 1948.